January 2016

[Friday, 01st] Age of Ice [17:00, Syfy] The plates that run under the Red Sea separate, hurling huge amounts of magma out and creating a weather system which drowns Egypt in snow! A family of misfits, including a truly 'orrible kid, head for what they think is an evacuation centre, and do so incredibly ineptly. E.g. they arrive at the foot of a dam just as it collapses! Against the demands of evolution, the worst of them survive.

[Saturday, 02nd] Iron Man 3 (2013) IM has a new self-assembling, self-destructing suit. There's another pissant terrorist around (called the Mandarin) and the president gives the military's Iron Patriot suit a paint job. Pepper, IM's girlfriend, has a head of security, who wants to replace all the staff with robots. He's put in hospital by the terrorists. Tony Stark challenges the Mandarin, who blasts his home.
   IM does some larking about and ends up crashing. Everyone thinks he's dead. He hooks up with an 'orrible 10-year-old kid. He discovers that terrorist bombings are being caused by exploding soldiers. The bad guys capture the Iron Patriot armour. Stark keeps having panic attacks and going to pieces and his girlfriend is given the exploding treatment.
   The 'orrible kid helps Stark to don his self-assembling armour for a battle with the BGs. The President doesn't know there's a BG in the IP suit until it commits mayhem on Air Force One. Stark saves some of the people who fall off the doomed plane. Pepper is apparently barbequed on a collapsing oil platform.
   No, she survives and finishes off the bad guy. Stark helps to stabilize the exploding stuff inside her, and he finally has surgery to remove the shrapnel in his chest. Then he chucks his chest arc reactor into the sea.
Rise of the Planet of the Apes (2011) It all starts with a search for a cure for human brain diseases, like Alzheimer's. One drug makes a chimpanzee more intelligent but she goes on a rampage and she's killed and the project is terminated. But Will, our hero, strolls off with her baby, Caesar. He gives his father, who has Alzheimer's, some of the drug and improves him markedly.
   Dad becomes resistant to the drug after 5 years, refuses a more powerful version and dies. The new drug makes chimps more intelligent but kills humans. Caesar releases the gaseous drug at the experimental facility, all the apes escape and free the apes at San Francisco zoo.
   One of the most ludicrous finishes to a film follows on the Goldarn Gate bridge. The apes take to the redwood forest and the virus spreads around the world, killing all the humans.

[Sunday, 03rd] NFL Sunday: The Jets in snowy Buffalo [18:03, Sky Sports 2] It was also horribly windy. The Jets could move the ball a bit in Q1, the Bills couldn't. Then Taylor sprinted for the left pylon to give the Bills a TD in the 10th minute. There was a punch up after the first play of Q2. The Bills reached 4th & 1 at the NJJ 2½ yard line; TD on the next play. The PAT missed. 0-13.
   Boom! Ivory went over 1,000 yards with a 58 yard rush but the Jets were held to a FG try, which missed. Marshall took a pass 40 yards to the BB 19, and the Jets advanced to a TD, also for Marshall. 7-13. The Bills went for a 4th down in the red zone and made the Jets jump, but they were held to a FG. 7-16.
   The Jets recovered a BB fumble in the first minute of Q3, went 3 and out, and kicked a FG. 10-16. The Bills kicked a FG after 10 minutes. 10-19. The Jets scored a TD with a minute left in Q3. 17-19.
   In Q4, the Bills stopped the Jets with a pick in their own end zone, and kicked a FG with 4 minutes left. 17-22. Fitzpatrick was hit as the threw and picked off; that was it for the Jets. He was picked again when the Jets got the ball back with 4 seconds left. Definitely the end.
Next, the Raiders in Kansas City. A fairly easy TD drive by KC to start. Smith made a 4th & 1 himself in the next KC drive, which went to another TD. 0-14. Jones returned the kick off 71 yards but the Raiders were held to a FG. 3-14.
   Smith rushed 22 yards in Q2 but the Chiefs had to punt. The Raiders fooled Smith into throwing a pick, but Carr was intercepted in the KC end zone. But a pick-6 by Amerson on the next play!! 10-14. KC restarted at the OR 45 after penalties but got nowhere.
   Punting and sacks in Q3. The Raiders had a punt try blocked for a safety. 10-16. KC scored another TD. 10-23. Sacks both ways. KC chewed up the clock, lost a FG to a penalty, the punter threw the ball instead of kicking it and the Raiders took over on downs.
   Crabtree scored a TD with 2 minutes left to get the Raiders to 17-23. The on-side kick didn't work and the Raiders couldn't manage a TD in the bit of time left to them. Kansas City won their 10th match in a row!

[Monday, 04th] SNF replay: The Vikings in Green Bay [12:30, Sky Sports 4] The Vikings went 41 yards to the GB 21 on a fake punt but they were held to a FG. So were GB. 3-all. In Q2, the Vikings were sacked to a FG with 3 minutes left. 6-3. They added a TD via AP in Q3. 13-3. Hyde made an amazing one-handed, backhand catch for an interception! But Rodgers was forced to fumble and the Vikings returned the ball for a TD. 20-3.
   Rodgers to Rogers for a TD 1½ minutes into Q4. 20-10. The Packers kicked a FG with 5:35 left. 20-13. The Vikings fumbled away the kick off; Crosby, the kicker, stripped the ball from the return man. But Rodgers was picked in the MV end zone with 2 minutes left. The Pack got the ball back with a minute or so left. And we got a Fail Mary to the MV end zone with 00 on the clock. No surprise that the Vikings won the division.
2 Guns (2013) [21:00, Film4] Two wiseguys case a bank then blow up the diner opposite it. One week earlier: they fail to buy some coke in Mexico and they're grabbed at the border on the way back. Bobby, the black guy, is a DEA undercover aimed at Poppy Greco. He needs to do a bank robbery. Surprise! The motormouth white guy is a US Navy undercover.
   Surprise! The small town bank is crammed with cash; $43 million which crooked CIA agents extorted from drug cartels. Stig shoots Bobby in the shoulder and zooms off with the cash. The Navy does the dirty on him. The CIA scumbags kill Bobby's boss, framing him, and tell him they want their $43M back or else.
   Our heroes head for Mexico. Poppy goes after the dosh. Our heroes have to rob a naval base or Bobby's girlfriend gets it. Bobby blows up the HQ building at the naval base after finding that the cash isn't there and Debbie betrayed him. Poppy shoots her even though only she knows where the cash is. Stig goes to Mexico to killl Poppy having been told by the Admiral that the Navy has disowned him.
   Bobby finds the cash. The naval and CIA BGs, and Bobby, join the party at Poppy's rancho. Shoot, shoot. Bobby blows the cash up and plugs Stig in the leg. Then they walk off into the sunset to set up another robbery of a cartel bank. At the end, Bobby admits he didn't take all of the CIA cash to Mexico.

[Tuesday, 05th] Castle series 8 [21:00, Alibi] There was a killer woman stabbing people. Alexis had closed all the PI cases, so Castle could go to view multiple homicides. Beckett's new bracelet was in a pool of blood and she was missing. Again. The dead guys had fake IDs. A black lady with an English accent was on their trail.
   Beckett was on the run with an East Indian man, who was sick. The cops threatened the black investigator to get some co-operation out of her. Castle was grabbed by BGs and his head was put in a bag full of spiders when he couldn't tell them anything. Beckett saved Castle's life in a shoot-out then left him for the cops to complete his rescue. A crazy woman shot up the PD. To be continued . . .

[Wednesday, 06th] Mythbusters [21:00, Discovery] A Simpson's special. Could Homer protect his house from a wrecking ball? Adam built a life-size Homer and Jamie created a 5,000 lb wrecking ball by digging two hemispherical holes and filling them with rebar and concrete. Then the lads built a couple of house-fronts.
    Could Barf have used a cherry bomb to make multiple geysers out of toilets? Adam built 3 half-scale, half-toilets; with acrylic windows to show the flow of blue water; and a plumbing system. Jamie insisted on using compressed air instead of an illegal cherry bomb. The first trial was a great success but Adam insisted on clogging the system to get more water for fountains. Then they went full-scale.
   Three full-size toilets were blasted free from their moorings when a cherry bomb went off inside the plumbing. The same happened with some heavy industrial anchoring. The system couldn't handle the shock-wave. Myth Busted.
   A strike with the wrecking ball did a lot of damage to one of the house fronts. Then Homer was attached and bulked up to his 239 lbs with water. Surprise! A lot less damage when he was between the ball and the house. Myth Plausible.

[Thursday, 07th] Chain Reaction (1996) [21:00, Syfy] Hydrogen is the dream fuel of the future. A mad professor and his assistants is working on a reactor. Suddenly, it works. Then the prof is killed and the reactor goes into a mega-explosion. There's a frame-up going on involving the Chinese government. $250K and a burst transmitter are planted in Eddie the engineer's loft.
   Eddie does a runner, as an excuse for a chase, with Dr. Lily. They take refuge with Maggie, who puts Eddie in touch with Paul, the government guy on the project. Bad guys kill a cop; the CIA is behind all the mayhem and the FBI knows it. More chase mayhem at a science museum. Eddie finds a secret CIA research facility.
   He tells Paul that he can make the reactor work in exchange for his and Lily's lives. The CIA stooge, Lyman, says no. So Eddie rats to the FBI and gives the CIA's reactor indigestion. Eddie has his own back door when the rats bug out the front door. Paul retires Lyman with a bullet then strolls off in his own getaway car.

[Friday, 08th] Death In Paradise [iPlayer] DI Goodman has bought a joke of a boat, Constable J.P. can't swim, Sergeant Fidel is afraid of the dark and only DS Florence is anything like normal. A team of marine biologist is surveying a reef in the area. 4 go diving and the millionaire boss is dead when they return. The reputation-making paper the group published is based on false data!
   Lots of suspects and red herrings. One of the assistants is done for coke smuggling. Then the DI has a brainstorm. It wasn't a passing pirate who robbed and murdered the leader, it was his evil, criminal mastermind wife, Laura, in cahoots with Nikki, who was ditched by her husband.
Blimey! The TV schedules are full of NCIS but it was last June when series 12 ended. Now, cue series 13 [21:00, FX] Gibbs was full of lead and talking to Mike, his dead mentor, and doing lots of flashbacks whilst being sewn up. He was put on administrative duties when he returned to the office. Dinbozo was still in Shanghai with Agent Ned's mom.
   Surprise! An NCIS computer was linked to the North Koreans. The director told Gibbs that the bad guy fanatic whom he visited in gaol was found hanged in his cell. Dinbozo and Ned's mom caught up with the repellent Luke just before the computer room he was in exploded.
   The North Koreans denied everything with the world on the brink of nuclear war! It was the rogue NCIS agent who was causing all the trouble. Dinbozo got to shoot the pissant pest in Shanghai and the world became safe again.
and then on Gold [22:00], there was The Best of Tommy Cooper; half an hour of clips, then
Police Squad! [22:30] with Lorne Greene as the corpse and Drebin investigating murder at a cheque-cashing agency.

[Saturday, 09th] The Mental Case on FX [17:00] Van Pelt's fiancé is exposed as an accomplice of Red John after Jane gives suspects different locations for the missing Agent Hightower. Van Pelt and Hightower shoot the accomplice after he plugs Lisbon cosmetically. Then Jane confronts Red John in a shopping mall and shoots him.
[18:00] R.J.'s minions remove his gun and phone from the body after the shooting to frame Jane. He does some time in gaol then raises his $1M bail and proves that the wife of the man he killed is just as bad, and Jane & Lisbon rescue a woman being held prisoner in the dead guy's basement. A jury acquits Jane of murder. Then he tells Lisbon that Red John is still alive.
[19:00]The CBI boss reinstates Jane and cans Lisbon, and brings in a new team. So Jane sets to work on the job of getting rid of the new agents and sneaking the old ones back. Kuzmenko, a personal trainer is murdered. Jane plans to get Lisbon reinstated. The murder is solved and his plan works. At the end, Jane brings a blind woman to the morgue and she says the body there isn't Red John.
[20:00] There's a missing child and the mother is a previous customer of Jane's and thinks he's a real psychic, and there's another fake psychic working her. The CBI has a shoot-out. Walt is shot but there's no sign of the kid. Jane does the fake psychic kid, spots the abductor and the kid is recovered. Then Jane stitches up the other fake psychic with a recording of him being frivolous.
NFL Wildcard Weekend: the Chiefs in Houston [21:30, Sky Sports 1] A 106 yard kick off return put the Chiefs 7-0 up after 11 seconds. The Texans went 3 & out. Smith put a foot too much on a pass which could have gone for a TD and KC punted. Hoyer was picked at the HT 33 but Smith was picked off a couple of plays later. Hoyer lost the ball and the Chiefs recovered it with 20 seconds left in Q1.
   The Chiefs kicked a FG a couple of minutes into Q2. 10-0. And another after 8 minutes. 13-0. The Texans reached the KC 2, only to be forced back and Hoyer was intercepted again. But no damage from it.
   The Texans punted in Q3. Smith lost a big scramble to holding. Eventually, the Chiefs added a TD in the 11th minute. 20-0. KC finished the quarter knocking on the door and started Q4 with a TD. A terrible pass by Hoyer was picked off with 6 minutes left. KC kicked a FG with 4 minutes left and 30-0 was the final score.

[Sunday, 10th] Wildcard replay: the Steelers @ the Bengals [09:00, Sky Sports 3] Neither offence could do much in Q1. The Bengals recovered a fumble in the 10th minute of Q2 in the rain, but the Steelers got the ball back with an interception a couple of plays later. They kicked a 39 yard FG, and another in the last minute of the half. 6-0.
   In Q3, the Steelers recovered a fumble by the Bengals. Another fumble at the tackle by the Bengals and a TD for the Steelers? No, their guy was ruled down by contact. Just a FG from the turnover. 9-0.
   A big pass play to Brown against a blitz got the Steelers to the CB 10, on to a TD for Bryant but no +2. 15-0. The Bengals went for a 4th down instead of kicking a FG, and fumbled the ball away. The Steelers went 3 & out with a sack and R'berger was crunched.
   The Bengals reached the PS 4 on pass interference in Q4; a 42 yard penalty; and went on to a TD. 15-7. A.J. Green took a TD pass after the 2 minute warning, no +2, 15-16. The Bengals intercepted a PS pass but fumbled the ball away. Then they gave up 2 x 15 yard penalties, one for unnecessary violence then another for objectionable conduct without a play between them, and put the Steelers into FG range to win 18-16.
NFL Wildcard Sunday: the Seaweeds @ the bloody freezing Vikings [17:30, Sky Sports 1] Bridgewater made a 4th & 1 in the opening drive, but bought just 3 more plays to a punt. The SH went 3 & out and blew a fake punt attempt, leaving the Vikings in FG range. 0-3. Q2 was defences all the way.
   Wilson was picked off and the Vikings kicked another FG 7 minutes in. 0-6, and another FG at the end of the quarter. 0-9. The SH got the ball to the MV 4 on a shambles play, on to a TD, 7-9 in the 4th minute of Q4.
   The Vikings had to get into FG range and leave not enough time for a response on the game clock. A pass to Rudolph helped to set up a 27 yard FG try, which missed by a mile. The Seaweeds win.
Next, the Packers @ the Redskins [21:42, Sky Sports 1] 57 deg.F and 30 mph wind in Washington. Punt, Punt, Rodgers sacked in the GB end zone for a safety? Here we go again. Swiss cheese, a TD for Washington? No half a yard short and the GB defence kept them out of the end zone so FG, 0-5.
   The Redskins scored a TD a couple of minutes into Q2 but missed the PAT. 0-11. GB actually reached the WR red zone, and Rodgers hit Cobb with a TD pass on a free play with the Skins trying to substitute. 7-11. Sack, fumble, BG ball as the Skins were looking threatening. Rodgers overthrew a wide open Cobb; a better pass would have produced a TD but a FG instead. 10-11. Then a TD for Adams in the last minute of the half. 17-11.
   Playing with the wind in Q3, the Redskins went for 4th & 1 at the GB 28 and reached the 7, on to a TD stroll in by Cousins. 17-18. Lacy made a 4th & 1 at the WR 45, then dashed to the WR 30. A TD for Starks from 4 yards out. 24-18. WR 3 & out. Lots of Cobb then lots of Starks in Q4. On to a TD for Lacy and +2 points. 32-18.
   A sack put the Skins in a hole, punt. Cousins was sacked at his 16 on a 4th down. GB took away time and WR time outs, FG, 35-18, 4 minutes left. The Redskins galloped down the field but Cousins was sacked on a 4th down in the red zone. The Redskins recovered a fumble at the GB 32 after the 2 minute warning, but didn't manage to score.

[Monday, 11th] Gotham series 2 [22:00, Channel 5] Bruce Wayne couldn't get into his father's vault. One month later, Officer Gordon was sacked by the Commissioner, so he told the commish he was going to get him and cashed in a favour with the Penguin. Gordon also had to collect a debt for Penguin. He also approached BW for help.
   BW decided to blow the door off the vault. Penguin made the Commissioner quit and Gordon got his job back. Some creep and his lunatic sister broke into the Gotham Asylum and broke out the "brilliant outlaws". In the vault, Bruce found a note from his dad, which rambled on about his true calling.

[Tuesday, 12th] The Night Shift [21:00, Sony] Some nifty roadside meatball surgery and some pacemaker repair to introduce our leading man and lady at the ER. And routine defusing of violent customers. Natch, there's a corporate suit who wants to kill patients to save money.
   T.C. clobbers the suit, who gets all fired up to fire him. Surprise! The suit knows a procedure which saves a patient and he's going blind, which put an end to his career as a surgeon.
Castle series 8 [22:00, Alibi+1] Beckett was still playing secret agent with some guy from the AG's office. They were rescued from killers by Rita, Castle's step-mom. The English lady went to Castle with an offer to help. Beckett told Rita what had been going on and how she came to have a bullet hole. We're into some "secret government kill everyone in the know" tosh.
   Rita tells Beckett that the life she's living is over and she needs to hide. Beckett refuses to run. The guy with her is a BG? No, that's just the CIA messing with computer records. They have to work outside the system to expose the conspiracy.
   The cops taser a couple of CIA assassins. Castle plugs another assassin in his vest. All the BGs are spirited out of the PD by bogus AG guys. The female BG shoots herself to protect her family and the HBG gets away with it. Rita stays on the trail of the SoB. And Beckett won't let go, either. Rita tells her that's a good way to get Castle killed. So she dumps him for the moment.

[Wednesday, 13th] Midsomer Murders [20:00, ITV 1] A UFO encounter? Or some twat with a helicopter or a drone? A forest ranger was missing. She was found covered in plastic muck in a plastic bag; dressed up to look like an alien's work. The area was swarming with UFO nuts, including a guy who claimed he saw one in 1984 and wrote books about them. The ranger had failed to get rid of him and his illegally parked caravan.
   The estranged father of dead Felicity was the CO of a nearby RAF base, which was used for storage. The drone freaked out the UFO tour lady. Another drowned body was found in a plastic bag; Felicity's secret lover, a female sergeant from the RAF base. Then a dug-up grave was found in the woods.
   Barnaby and DS Nelson found secret RAF tunnels and ran into the obstructive CO. Felicity found the grave of a bloke who disappeared in 1984. The RAF had been working on cold-war experimental flying machines. The UFO guy was murdered next.
   The police found the wreck of the drone in the woods and Barnaby got to order the RAF CO out of his crime scene. The son of the UFO guy had found and fixed up the drone to give his father, who had terminal cancer, some vindication.
   All the murders went back to infidelity in 1984. Nathan, the son of the guy who was dug up, who was murdered by his wife, obligingly confessed to the rest. Then Barnaby got a surprise birthday party.

[Thursday, 14th] Monty Python's Personal Best [19:45-21:00, Sky Arts] is sketches from the shows intercut with interview clips with the cast. Great stuff!
Death In Paradise [21:00, BBC 1] The governor is retiring after 4 years but she drops dead after drinking champagne handed to her by the police commissioner! The French are claiming Spiller's Rock, which has been a British possession for donkey's years. Dead Caroline was blackmailing them with the threat of a trade embargo, the Frogs say.
   Caroline hired private security guards for the Rock; there are emeralds there! Government House is bugged. The DI plugs the leak and has a brainstorm. The drink was a distraction and there was a recording of the killer giving the poison to the governor: her secretary!

[Friday, 15th] NCIS [Personal Day, 21:00, FX] Mitch of the DEA in San Diego was after a wayward Marine, whose body McGee & Bishop found. Dinbozo, still benched, found out that Mitch's father was there when bad guy Long killed Gibbs' family. A guy being questioned by Mitch pulled a gun and McGee blew him away. So Mitch blew up.
   Ducky & Abby found packets of heroin sewn into a carpet imported from Afghanistan. Mitch had the nerve to lie to Gibbs and go after Long; but not to kill him, only to bluff a confession out of him.

[Saturday, 16th] Battle of Los Angeles (2011) [13:00, Syfy] A spaceship 2 miles across starts zapping LA. The US military is just useless. Flying saucers attack a Mickey Mouse National Guard air base. A pilot sent on a mission in 1942 turns up!! A gang of comedy soldiers takes out an alien rover. A lady with a sword helps some soldiers to take out small drones.
   The missing captain is taken to a secret bunker. He says the US military has to release its alien prisoner, or else, and he turns out to be the plan to get the job done. So the sword lady and her small gang of misfits has to save the planet by kicking alien ass in the belly of the mothership, which duly crashes onto LA. So a bit of a Pyrrhic victory.
Dracano (2013) [17:00, Syfy] Project Kronos is intended to head off serious volcanic eruptions and tap clean energy from volcanoes. An eruption blasts out a huge eff with a dragon in it; which eats Petra, Prof. Simon's field worker. He and his assistant, Carla, get the bum's rush from their university and the project is cancelled.
   There are rumours of large carcases and a military cover-up. The prof. and his daughter, Heather, head for the eruption site after their home is attacked; the university dumped the blame for the eruption on the prof. The prof. beats a cordon to find out what really heppened. Heather puts video of soldiers blasting another egg on her school's website.
   The military gets a bug up its ass and brands the prof and Carla armed & dangerous. Mt. Lassiter blows and releases dragons! A general admits to the prof. that Mt. St. Helens was nuked to contain the dragons. It's kill them or they'll eat the human race! The prof. is asked where to plant a nuke to keep the dragons and their queen in hibernation.
   A lady blogger gets a leak. Prof. Lowell has to go into a volcano and Oregon has to be evacuated because of the dragons. The nuke ends up in the wrong place, the President gets ready to nuke Oregon but the prof. comes up with a way to take out the mother dragon. Heather puts herself into the suicide mission.
   The nuclear strike is called off at the last second and mom dragon is done in. Then Heather is shot out of the volcano in her dragon egg. 4 months later, the lady blogger is recording a piece saying the dragon threat ain't over when she's eaten by one.
Atlantic Rim (2013) [19:00, Syfy] A huge sea monster blows up an oil rig in the Gulf of Mexico. NASA sends 3 divers down in huge humanoid robots; they find a ton of wreckage and a monster. The reckless white guy ignores orders to follow it to a battle on shore and he wrecks most of a seaside town. Lt. Ray is given the hero treatment then locked up for disobeying orders.
   Monsters start coming ashore. His 2 buddies bust Ray out of gaol. A nutter with an eye-patch wants to nuke the bits of America where there are monsters. Our 3 heroes get an upgrade of speed and agility for their Project Armada suits to fight the monsters. Manhattan gets a seeing to. The Admiran beats up eye-patch when he pulls a gun. And the monsters are done in, of course.
NFL Saturday: The Chiefs in New England [21:30, Sky Sports 2] NE opened with a TD drive. FG for KC. 3-7. Toward the end of Q2, Brady tried to run into the KC end zone; didn't quite make it. QB sneak for a TD on the next play. 3-14. The Chiefs got close but just a FG. 6-14.
   A promising KC opening drive of Q3 ended with a fumble to NE. TD pass to Gronk, 6-21. Smith avoided 4 sack attempts and Avant made a spectacular catch, KC made a 4th & 3 @ the NE 15; 5 yard penalty on NE, TD pass on the next play, Smith to Wilson. 13-21.
   NE were held to a FG in Q4. 13-24. KC were sacked to a punt. FG for NE with 10:20 left. 13-27. KC out on downs with a 4th down interception? No, the catch was out of bounds, putting NE 28 yards closer to the KC goal line. Punt. KC wasted a ton of time on the way to a TD. 20-27 with just 1:13 left. The on-side kick try flopped, the Patriots win.

[Sunday, 17th] Next, the Packers in Arizona [01:16, Sky Sports 2] Both sides started 3 & out. The Cardinals made a 4th & 1 just short of the GB 9 and went on to a TD. 0-7. More defence. In Q2, Rodgers was picked at the AC goal line; wiped out by a penalty on Arizona, FG, 3-7. And another FG for GB at the end of the half. 6-7.
   The GB opening drive of Q3 was stopped by a pick of a tipped pass but a pick by Dix stopped the Cards. A 62 yard run by Lacy to the AC 8! TD pass to Janis. 13-7. A 32 yard pass to Fitzgerald set up a FG for the Cards. 13-10.
   In Q4, Palmer was picked in the GB end zone by Randle; GB punt. The Cardinals scored a TD via a pass tipped to Floyd. 13-17. 3:44 left. GB went 4 & out leaving Arizona in FG range. 13-20. 1:50 left. Rodgers went down to a 2nd down sack. Blatant pass interference wasn't called on the next play. GB wasted time with bad decisions. With time running out, Rodgers hurled a Detroit Special Hail Mary to the AC end zone. And Janis caught it!!! 20-all.
   OT: the ref bogged up the coin toss and Denver got the ball instead of the Packers. 75 yards pass to Fitzgerald, the Cardinals to the GB 5; Palmer scrambled and tossed a TD pass to a wide open Fitzgerald 2 plays later. The Cardinals win 20-26, and it was Palmer's first ever playoff win.
NFL Sunday: The Seaweeds in Carolina [18:05, Sky Sports 2] Big gain for Stewart on the first play to the SH 16, CP recovered their fumble on the next play and a TD on the 4th play. The second SH play picked for a TD! 0-14. Stewart made another TD run as the 2nd play of Q2. 0-21.
   A pick by Finnegan set up a CP FG. 0-24. The Seaweeds were having trouble keeping their feet on the slippery pitch. A TD pass to Olsen. 0-31. The SH went out on downs in the CP red zone instead of kicking a FG, and a 55 yard FG try at the end of the half missed.
   The SH opened Q3 with a quick TD. The CP were sacked to a punt. Another TD drive by the SH. 14-31. Another TD for the Weeds in Q4 with the Panthers stalled. 21-31, 6 minutes left. The SH kicked a FG with 1:12 left for 24-31 but their on-side kick didn't work and the Panthers could run out the clock.
   Score early, score often and don't stop is a good way to win. The Panthers ignored the 3rd part and they gave their supporters a lot of grief.
Next: the Steelers in windy Denver [21:40, Sky Sports 2] PS 3 & out. Big punt return by Denver to PS 30. But just a FG. 0-3. Another DB FG with under 4 minutes left in the quarter. The Steelers replied with a TD drive and a run by Toussaint. 7-6. A 58 yard pass play got the Steelers to the DB 22 in Q2, sack, FG, 10-6. The Broncos went out on downs with 5 minutes of the half left? No, Manning got rid of the ball so no sack. A 51 yard FG just made. 10-9.
   The Steelers added another FG to their tally in Q3. The Broncos reached FG range after 11 minutes. Sack, FG, 13-12. In Q4, Manning slipped, or gave himself up, then got up and made a successful pass; but the Broncos still punted. Nearly a disaster for the Steelers when the guy receiving the punt bogged up at the goal line but the Steelers got a touch-back +5 yards for a penalty on the Broncos.
   11:33 to go. The Steelers were stopped by a forced fumble; the Broncos did nothing with it. Eventually, a TD run by Anderson with 3 minutes left, +2 points, Denver in the lead at 13-20. The Steelers went out on downs. The Broncos kicked a FG with 53 seconds left. 13-23. Needing 2 scores, the Steelers kicked a FG for 16-23 with 19 seconds left but their on-side kick failed. The End.

[Monday, 18th] Gotham [22:00, Channel 5] The released nutters threw people off a building. The nutter who set them free is about to become mega-tedious. Bruce tried to access the dirt on his dad's computer, Alfred wrecked it and was fired. Gordon tried to get Harvey to rejoin the force but Scotty, the girlfriend, said no.
   Nutters grabbed a petrol tanker and attacked a school bus, but Gordon saved the day. Crazy Barbara lured Gordon away for a beating whilst the nutters were murdering everyone at the cop shop. Bruce rehired Alfred, who got Lucius to fix the computer.

[Tuesday, 19th] Castle [21:00, Alibi] is still the same incestuous malarky. There are lots of crime stories out in the big, wide world. So why do the producers have to keep commissioning this crap about secret CIA/NSA/whatever spooks going after Beckett?
   Beckett has to get something done before Castle works out why she dumped him. There's a dead convict in Central Park, but Riker's hasn't lost anyone. Castle joins in the case as a PI, discovers that Peter, the dead kid, is a college student and blags himself a job at the college, to Beckett's dismay.
   Castle & Alexis find a secret dungeon where a professor is running an illegal experiment for the US military. Castle marches the prof to the PD in handcuffs. Someone gets all the people and evidence out of the dungeon before the cops arrive. Castle puts himself and Beckett into the cell from which Peter escaped and deduces that the girl next door helped him to escape and then killed him.

[Wednesday, 20th] Mythbusters [21:00, Discovery] Star Wars Stuff: Can anyone really dodge blasts from laser rifles? Jamie built an analog firing missles at 130 mph, the apparent speed of blasts in the film. Neither he nor Adam could dodge them, even when they knew the other guy was about to fire. Myth Busted.
   Does holding the high ground give an advantage in a light-sabre duel? Adam built conductive suits out of copper mesh and mock sabres. Neither won a particular advantage on the level or with one on higher ground. So they brought in an expert, who gave them some training.
   Incidentally, the expert managed to deflect a couple of blaster bolts with his kendo stick, but that myth remained busted. Adam & Jamie built a special set for their "trained" duels, and found, again, that higher ground offered no advantage. Myth Busted.

[Thursday, 21st] Major Crimes, series 4/11[Universal on demand] A body dump at a hospital; 3 dead, one sent to surgery. A carpet store was busted; there was a high-stakes poker game there. The driver of the guy in surgery was harassed. There was another player in the game and Molly, the organizer, tried to split to Mexico with $300K.
   Molly put Andy in hospital but he wouldn't stay away from work. The 5th poker player was a major donor to police charities. The card player in hospital croaked as the police were wondering about how secure the game was. The son of his driver did a runner in the cop shop, and he was nailed.
Death in Paradise [21:00, BBC 1] A model was done in at a fashion show. Zoe had a stalker. Nelson, the pit boss, didn't get on with Zoe but he's too obvious. Zoe's laptop was missing and there was no sign of the partner to the stocking she was holding. Elouise remained the most suspicious suspect, so it couldn't be her.
   The photographer, who was made bankrupt by Zoe's drug accusations, was tapped up but Jay took a photo of the murder happening. Sadie was the stalker but not an enemy. The best the DI could do was come up with a very improbably frame for the photographer.

[Friday, 22nd] NCIS 13/3 [Incognito, 21:00, FX] The boss & Dinbozo went to see a Major, who was found dead. Major Newton asked to see Gibbs and he'd been working unofficially on an unsolved armoury robbery. Captain Hudson and his wife lied about seeing Newton, so Gibbs put McGee and Bishop undercover in the house across the road to spy on them.
   Abby found that Mrs. Hudson was an imposter. Bishop went burgling. Some random Marine recognized McGee and blew the gaff. Bishop found a body in a box: the real, and rich, Mrs. Hudson, and fought off the husband. Bishop squared away the secret holiday with her husband and the wheels came off Dinbozo's English aristocracy connection.

[Saturday, 23rd] Midsomer Murders: the last case for DCI Tom Barnaby [Fit For Murder, 18:00, ITV3] Worried about his police medical, Barnaby let his wife take him to the Manor Spa, where Mrs. B. found a body in the flotation tank as he was having his aura read by Cloud. Dead Kitty was the wife of the drunken Kenny, who had disappeared.
   The Manor, run by Phoebe, was going broke and she and her second husband, Luke, had become enemies of former friend Miranda, who was almost shacked with the obnoxious and violent Carter. Luke was croaked in the gym by a machine once serviced by Carter. But the ME wasn't sure if Kitty and Luke have been murdered.
   Cloud did some more work on Barnaby's aura. Jones found that a set of keys was missing; they were at Miranda's place along with a part stolen from the machine that killed Luke. Kenny's car was found dumped. Barnaby found him; battered but not quite dead. Phoebe didn't him him quite hard enough.
   Kenny and his wife had decided not to invest in the spa. Phoebe just wanted everyone to be happy. At the end, Cloud did another number on Barnaby.
Midsomer Murders: cousin John's first case [Death in the Slow Lane, 20:00, ITV 3] The local girls' school holds a vintage car show. Palmer, a racing driver from the 1960s, shot himself there and his body was discovered 40 years later. His car had been dumped at the Lake District and the Causton Restoration Group has done it up. Darnley School is going bust and the head's daughter, Jessica, and the financial guru, Jamie, want to turn it into a state school to make it solvent again.
   One of the girls and her old-girl mother are smuggling and dealing drugs. The ex-husband is the financial guru. The head brings in a distinguished old boy as one of the judges. Jessica gets a loutish local DJ as the other. He's done in. The best car is Palmer's done-up car, natch, and it's worth a hundred grand.
   A scumbag kid off the estate has come into lots of cash. Jessica wants her mother to sell the car and retire, leaving herself and Jamie in charge. Thomas, the yob, has a fatal crash. Barnaby finds that Palmer is Jessica's father. The drug smuggling is detected. Barnaby realizes that Palmer was murdered; the old "shot with the wrong hand" thing; and goes grand-standing on his own. But DS Jones saves him from being done in.

[Sunday, 24th] Conference Championships: the Patriots in Denver [20:00, Sky Sports 1] NE punted. The Broncos reached the red zone, TD pass to Daniels, 0-7 half way through Q1. Some punting; NE were sacked to a punt. The Broncos gave the ball away at their 22 after a NE challenge on a pass by Manning; TD run by Jackson but the PAT missed. 6-7.
   Miller picked Brady in the 1st minute of Q2 at the NE 16; another TD pass to Daniels, 6-14. NE were sacked to a FG, 9-14. Brady was picked again with 4 minutes to go by Steward but the Broncos were sacked to a punt. But they kicked a 52 yard FG in the last minute of the half. 9-17.
   The Broncos were sacked to a punt at the start of Q3. The Patriots managed a FG, 12-17. Manning rushed for a first down! on the way to a DB punt. All defence with sacks into Q4. Anderson dashed 66 yards to the NE 22 and the Broncos kicked a FG. 12-21.
   The Patriots, getting desperate, went out on downs. Same again up close with 2:18 left. NE got one more shot. They reached the DB 4 and another 4th down; predictably, the TD pass went to Gronk. 18-20. But a 2-point try failed!! An on-side kick try also failed, the Broncos win.
   The longer this match went on, the more it looked like the only way the Pats would win would be via a scramble-shambles right at the end and brain-fade by the Denver defence. But the Broncos' D kept their heads and rounded out a sterling performance.
Next, the Cardinals in Carolina [23:46, Sky Sports 1] The Cardinals went 3 & out and the Panthers started with a FG. Their next drive ended with Ginn running to the left sideline then almost all the way back to the right sideline to travel 22½ yards for a TD. 0-10. The Panthers were backed up but Newton found a wide open Brown for an 86 yard TD pass. 0-17.
   The Cardinals reached CP territory in Q2. Palmer fumbled the ball away and the Panthers went 3 & out. The Cardinals reached FG range, and went on to a TD run by Johnson. 7-17. The Panthers had to punt but the AC return man bogged catching the ball and gave it away. Two good dashes by Stewart took the CP 40 yards to the AC 1, and Newton did a leap to score. 7-24. The ball was knocked away from Palmer right but Peterson, who bogged the punt return, intercepted Newton and scampered to the CP 22. Bummer! Palmer was picked in the CP end zone.
   The Panthers' opening drive of Q3 was held to a FG. 7-27. Newton called his own number for a TD dive after 13 minutes. 7-34. The Cards scored a TD in the first minute of Q4 and went for +2. 15-34. Their next drive was stopped by a pick by Coleman close to the CP goal line.
   Newton fired another big pass to Olsen, then a TD pass to Funchess. The Panthers made +2, 15-42, 5:26 to go. A pick-6 for Kuechly right away. 15-49. Palmer was picked again but it was too late to matter by then. A comfortable win for the Panthers.

[Monday, 25th] Gotham [22:00, Channel 5] Gordon went after the pathetic piece of crap who killed 9 cops and the Commissioner last week as the guy was killing his own father. Gordon was beaten up again. He couldn't go to Dr. Lee's charity do, which was attended by Bruce Wayne. The nutter and Crazy Barbara showed up as a magic act.
   The nutter went on a murder spree, starting with the deputy mayor. Bruce Wayne would have been on the list as Gordon and Alfred didn't have a clear shot at the nutter, but Mr. Galivant, the guy who let the loonies out of the Asylum, stabbed the nutter and became the hero of the hour. Crazy Barbara got away and Harve went to mock the Penguin, who was living it up.

[Tuesday, 26th] Castle [21:00, Alibi] A bloke asked for a sign in church and he was shot in the head. Dave was a Great American one-shot Novelist. Castle ambulance-chased his widow to get on the case. A Mafia guy told the cops that Dave was really a mobster in Witness Protection.
   Dave was really a con-man working with Eric, another scammer, and Beckett was trying to connect a Senator to the heroin trade. Dave was a pathalogical liar, not a con-man. Eric said Dave oncovered something dangerous. Castle bunged Det. Ryan $500/week for inside info.
   The blind priest who was Dave's pal wasn't blind! He told Beckett that Dave found a $10M slush fund at City Hall. Castle nominated a suspect, who claimed he didn't kill Dave. That was the wife and it was justifiable homicide.

[Wednesday, 27th] Midsomer Murders [Breaking The Chain, 20:00, ITV 1] Greg the rebel defied team orders and won a stage. His reward for not letting Mitch, the team owner's son, win was to be done in. There was an animal rights red herring protesting against the race and some nutter was threatening Cllr. Mary, one of the organizers.
   Greg was injected with poison. All the other bikers had to give blood samples. Mitch was looking very nervous about that. Greg was getting cash from a mysterious source. Bash! Damien, the main race organizer, was put in hospital and the blood samples were smashed. Aiden, Mitch's brother, baled out of their dad's team.
   Damien had a bonfire of documents via Joanna, the sponsor of Mitch's team. Bash! That was it for Aiden. Not part of the original plan, Barnaby decided. Someone vandalized a commemorative plaque for the race. The nutter claimed that Jez's first wife didn't die as a result of an accident. Cllr. Mary, his second wife, made a mistake and covered it up, and Jez was persecuting her to get a confession on tape. Nothing to do with the murders.
   Joanna shed Damien. The team boss who bashed Damien had proof that he'd been getting back-handers from Mitch's dad, Des. Joanna claimed Mitch but he told her he was sticking with Kim.
   Des was gassed a bit but the cops saved him. Gulp! Kim the psycho physio had a husband so she couldn't marry Mitch and Greg had been blackmailing her. So he had had to go. And Aiden knew that Mitch had been doping, so Kim took care of him, too.

[Thursday, 28th] Death In Paradise [21:00, BBC 1] It was Cedric's funeral, and Dwayne got a message from the phone he put in the coffin saying "I was murdered". Cedric, a notorious practical joker, was in precarious health. The anniversary of the island's biggest natural disaster was approaching; a hurricane in which Vincent disappeared.
   The DI decided that Cedric had been about to spill the beans about Vincent, whose mother was close to death. Three of Vincent's friends were arrested in the jungle with shovels. Vincent died in an accident. Cedric's widow admitted she took the SIMM card from the phone and sent the message.
   The DI decided that Cedric was going to confess to killing Vincent to give the dying mother some comfort. So the priest confessed to killing Cedric because he thought the truth about Vincent would ruin the lives of the remaining three.
Elementary [22:00, Living+1] Someone had written a work of fiction about SH and Watson. An FBI agent was put through a tree shredder. Watson found that the author was her step-father. Agent Underhill had been working on the case of a missing girl.
   SH decided that the girl who had been returned to the parents was an imposter. Having bought lots of copies of the book to destroy them, Watson found that SH wasn't bothered about fiction about him, having got the hump over Watson's accounts of their real adventures.
   The imposter said the Davenport parents killed the real Mina and her father had been abusing her. Mr. Davenport went to the PD to confess to killing the FBI agent. The fake Mina was busted but she thought she was fireproof. And Watson decided that she was cool with her step-father's sequel to the first book.

[Friday, 29th] NCIS [Double Take, 21:00, FX] A pissant kid did a robbery out of his league and ended up dead with a box of blue grenades and lots of cash. The director's last job as a field agent was involved and he had to work again with a sacked agent, who knew about the robbery. Dinbozo and Bishop investigated the guy running an illegal sports book, who was robbed.
   The sacked guy was bashed to bitz. The Sec. Nav. was suddenly offering Director Vance a chance to retire to dodge a frame-up. He went back into the field with Gibbs and asked the Sec. Nav. for enough rope to hang himself.
   There was a plan to steal evidence in transit and leave Director Vance a framed fall-guy. Gibbs' bugging of the cash led the team to the bad guy and his lawyer. And Vance wasn't fired.

[Saturday, 30th] Murder By Death (1976, Peter Sellers) [17:00, 5USA] A millionaire with a blind butler invites famous detectives to his god-forsaken mansion: spoofs of Charlie Chan, Hercule Poirot, Sam Spade, Miss Marple, and an English aristocrat plus wife.
   Falling gargoyles fail to see off Wang and No. 3 son, Mr. & Mrs. Charleston and others at the front door. Miss Marbles, with her ancient nurse, arrive in time for a non-event dinner. Mr. Wang gets poisoned wine. When Mr. Twain shows up, he locks everyone in and offers a million dollars to whoever solves the murder, which will be committed at midnight.
   The butler is killed at 11:40, his body is stolen but his clothes are left behind, and rooms move about mysteriously. Twain is done in on the stroke of midnight. Lots of uncomfortable secrets about the detectives are exposed.
   Each gets something lethal in their room; snake, scorpion, gas, descending ceiling, etc. In the end, it's the butler who dunnit. But who is the butler? A strange creature, who keeps whipping off a mask to reveal another identity under the mask.

[Sunday, 31st] Loch Ness (1996) [16:55, 5*] is a piece of sentimental tree-huggery about an American "scientist", who failed to find Big Foot, but who thinks he'll have more luck in Scotland. He visits a generally unfriendly and violent community on the shores of the loch.
   When he finds a pair of plesiosaurs, with the help of the pub landlady's 9-year-old daughter, he makes a mockery at a lecture organized by his sponsor and chooses not to tell the world about his discovery. Some scientist.
San Andreas Quake [19:10, Syfy] A girl is blowing stuff up in the back yard at 4:30 a.m. Her father gets up to tick her off and he's killed when there's an earthquake and the house falls on him. Grown up, our heroine is using real-time data from microquakes to predict earthquakes. She was wrong big-time trying to do this in 2008.
   Her system predicts an R4.3 quake, she causes a panic and there's a quake a bit later than the time predicted. Then her program tells her the entire San Andreas Fault is about to throw R10 quakes along its entire 800 mile length. She tries to get her daughter to leave her hotel as it is rated only to R8. Dad, in a helicopter, goes after Ally.
   The guy at the USGS refused to go for a a level 4 evacuation. Mom heads downtown with Ally's black boyfriend and runs into all sorts of trouble like roads cracking up, bridges collapsing and nutters with guns. Some drunken idiot crashes a plane onto Dad's chopper so he has to blag another.
   Lots of nutters wave guns along the way, but Abby and her parents are all up in the air before the Big One hits.

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